When you plan a Poland itinerary Łódź doesn’t normally feature highly on the list of major cities in Poland to visit. However, the extensive regeneration of the cultural and historical things to do in Łódź coupled with its new push on eco-friendly practices and sustainability is transforming Łódź into a city that offers up some of the very best of Poland.
Having recently been recognized in the sustainability category of National Geographic Traveler’s ‘Best of the World 2022’ Łódź Poland has truly earned its evolving reputation as a fascinating and progressive city.
This list of things to do in Łódź will perfectly highlight how the city of Łódź has transformed from a place of industry and textile workers to a thriving sustainably conscious hub that meets the modern demands of city dwellers, all the while paying homage to its rich and cultural heritage.
Caroline Muller is an award-winning travel blogger. She writes and photographs full-time while oscillating between Sicily and Brussels as a home base. She has documented over 60 countries across six continents and does not plan to stop any time soon. A staunch vegetarian for over 25 years, she loves exploring local cuisine in search of that perfect (plant-based) mouthful.
With this blog, she hopes to help you travel slower, more sustainably and a hella lot more meaningfully. Pack your bags!
Plan your visit to the city of Łódź at a glance
If you’re ready to start making plans for your trip to Łódź and want to save time and stress I’ve summarized the main points of this post so you can get right to it!
Sustainable Hotels in Łódź
Where is Łódź and how do I get there?
The city of Łódź is located between the two large cities of Warsaw and Wroclaw. While it is much lesser known versus some of the other starlets in Poland like Krakow and Gdansk, it is well worth a visitç Getting to Łódź is easiest from Warsaw as it is closest and has the best connections to Łódź. There are various options to choose from, depending on your budget and sense of adventure.
Getting to Łódź by train
The network of trains that crisscrosses through Poland is highly efficient, clean, and best of all easy to navigate. Purchasing tickets can be done in the train stations themselves or online. In the larger Polish cities people speak English and asking for further information on train routes is easy enough in the train station itself. In smaller cities, English might not be spoken and purchasing tickets online might be easier.
We took the direct train from Warsaw (Warszawa Centralna) to Łódź (Łódź Fabryczna). The train ride takes between 90 min and 150 minutes, depending on the type of train you take. Multiple trains run daily and prices range from 30 PLN ($7,5) to 60 PLN ($15).
Book Tickets: Check the timetables and book your ticket online
Guided trips to Łódź
There are a few guided tours to Łódź from Warsaw which all include pickup at your hotel in Warsaw, transfer to Łódź, guided tour of the city, and return to Warsaw. Though this option is more expensive, it is hassle-free and a great way to explore what there is to see in Łódź Poland in just one single day.
BUDGET FRIENDLY TOUR ($): Transfer to Łódź by train, get a guided tour of the city by a knowledgeable local and visit both the Jewish Cemetry (tickets included) and the beautiful Herbst Palace (tickets included). Check rates & availability
DELUX TOUR ($$): Transfer to Łódź by private car (up to 6 people) with an English-speaking driver, 3-hour tour of Łódź by a passionate English-speaking local guide covering the main highlight of the city. Check rates & availability.
12 Things to do in Łódź
Although Lodz is not as polished as Krakow of Warsaw, there is an inherent beauty in its authenticity. As the third-largest city in Poland, it might come as no surprise that there is a ton of things to do in Lodz.
Gentle fading romantic palaces rub shoulders with (former) no-nonsense industrial sites, some turned into museums & shopping meccas while others still await funding to be refurbished. The contrast of architectural styles is a constant source of wonder when walking through the city.
Sustainable Tip: Why not explore Łódź on a bicycle? The city has an extensive network of public bikes you can use. The sign-up fee is 20zł, the first 60 min are 1zł and the following hours are charged at 4zł. Find out everything about bike rental in Łódź
1. Explore Manufaktura, Łódź Poland
Manufaktura is the perfect juxtaposition of the city’s industrial roots and modern-day living. Manfukatura can lay claim to the fact that it is one of the largest urban regeneration schemes in Poland and is a credit to the city’s revitalization efforts. The city of Gdansk in northern Poland is currently reviving its historic Shipyards in much the same fashion.
Here you can walk amongst the former textile factories encased by a sturdy industrial brick building from the late 1800s while pursuing over 200 shops and boutiques, a cinema, fitness center, a bowling alley, bars, and restaurants.
Once you are shopped out then it is certainly worth visiting The Museum of the Factory. A trip around the factory will journey you back in time to the 19th Century and you can experience the everyday life of the workers at this once-bustling factory. You will also get a first-hand insight into the life and works of the factory’s creator Izrael Poznanski.
Location: Manufaktura, Drewnowska 58, 91-002 Łódź, Poland
Entrance Fee (Museum of the Factory): 11ł ($2.5) and 13ł, ($3) for the exhibition and viewing tower
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 10.00 AM – 6.00 PM
2. Browse the Museum Stutski ms2
Located in a former spinning mill belonging to the Manufaktura complex you will find one of the three art museums in Łódź, ms2. Again this museum cleverly combines history and the modern-day, being one of the oldest art museums in the world that houses over 200 works of art, from the 20th and 21st centuries.
In this old uninspiring brick factory, you will find yourself in a contemporary art space exploring modern-day concepts from cubism to neoplasticism. Ms2 is an artistic gem that fits perfectly in this city’s modern-day makeover.
Location: Ogrodowa 19, 91-071 Łódź, Poland
Entrance Fee: 15ł ($3.5)
Opening Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 12.00 PM – 6.30 PM, Tuesday 9.00- 4.00 PM
3. Go inside the Izrael Poznanski Palace
Staying within the physical remit of Manufaktura and just a two-minute stroll away is one of the great historical Łódź attractions, the Izrael Poznanski Palace, which was built in the late 19th century. You will not be able to miss this former home of cotton mogul Izrael Poznanski, which stands tall in an L-shaped plan and exudes the grandeur and prosperity with which it was built.
The scope and extravagance of this former residence can be felt from the cleverly carved stone exterior through to its plush interiors. Internally you can expect to find silk wallpaper, chandeliers, and stained-glass skylights as you walk through its vast premises.
Once at the palace you can explore the private study of Poznanski, the palace grounds, or visit the Łódź City Museum located within the palace itself. You will be hard-pressed to find a Łódź tourist attraction to rival the size and magnificence of this monumental palace.
Location: 90-001 Łódź, Poland
Entrance Fee: 10ł ($2.3), on Thursday’s entrance is free.
Opening Hours: Tuesdays, Thursdays 10.00 AM – 4.00 PM; Wednesdays 2.00 PM – 6.00 PM; Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays 10.00 AM – 6.00 PM
4. Marvel at the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
Remaining in the 19th century for just a short while longer, when Poland was part of the Russian empire and turning your attention to this uncharacteristically colorful cathedral. The Alexander Nevsky cathedral was financed, in part, by Izrael Poznanski to celebrate the survival of the then-Russian emperor from an assassination attempt.
This cathedral’s blue domes, opulent gold borders, and iconostasis are reminiscent of its Russian influence and are starkly distinguishable from the heavy brick and industrial feel of the rest of the city’s architecture. This stand-alone historical relic is certainly worth your time and what is more, admission to the cathedral is free.
Location: Jana Kilińskiego 56, 90-118 Łódź, Poland
Entrance Fee: free
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday 8.00-9.00 AM & 4.30-6.00 PM; Saturday 9.00-10.00 AM & 5.00-6.30 PM; Sunday 8.00-12.00 PM
5. Walk through the Jewish Cemetery
No Poland trip is complete without paying homage to its rich history and a visit to Łódź is no different. Łódź is home to one of the largest Jewish burial grounds in the world. Over 160,000 people are buried in this cemetery, which is currently undergoing renovations in line with the rest of the city.
A visit to this cemetery in the Baluty district will transport you through the decades of the 19th and 20th centuries. When walking amongst the headstones some of which are hidden between trees and covered in moss you will see the lavish memorials for successful industrials from the 19th century such as the aforementioned Izrael Poznanski.
Then, as you travel on through to the southern part of the cemetery named ‘Ghetto Field’ you will encounter the somber mass graves for the 45,000 Jews who lost their lives here during the war.
Location: Bracka 40, 91-717 Łódź, Poland
Entrance Fee: 10ł ($2.3)
Opening Hours: 1st April – 1st November 9.00 AM- 05.00 PM & 2nd November – 31st March 9.00 AM- 03.00 PM
6. Visit the Radegast Train Station
Within the same Baluty district, you will find another reminder of the history of Łódź, which has been eternalized at the Radegast Train Station. Over 200,000 Jews from the Łódź ghetto, Poland, and wider Europe came through and departed from this point on trains.
This poignant site was converted into a memorial in 2005 and you will find large slab-like gray gravestones with the destinations and handprints etched eternally in the concrete. You will also find three windowless wagons and the resorted station building which has been converted into a museum.
Although it can be one of the more difficult and sobering things to see in Łódź it is generally considered to be something tourists should make time for when they visit Łódź.
Location: aleja Pamięci Ofiar Litzmannstadt Getto 12, 91-859 Łódź, Poland
Entrance Fee: free
Opening Hours: Monday-Thursday 10.00 AM – 03.00 PM; Saturday & Sunday 10.00 AM -05.00 PM; closed Friday
7. Go house hunting on Ulica Piotrkowska
Coming back now to the hustle and bustle of the modern-day, one of the Łódź must-see attractions is Piotrkowska Street. This street can be picked out on any map of Łódź as it is a poker straight line measuring just under five kilometers in length, making it one of Europe’s longest pedestrian and commercial streets.
This street spans the centuries having once been the home to the successful industrialists, apparent by the intricate facades and grandeur of the buildings. These buildings have, for the most part, been lovingly restored to replicate the wealth and splendor of the industrial age although you can expect to find some still in a state of disrepair.
As you walk down this endless street you will find these towering buildings filled with modern shops, boutiques, cafes, bars, and some of the best restaurants in Łódź. You can walk the length of this street which stretches from Independence Square (Plac Niepodległości) to Liberty Square (Plac Wolności) or you can ride a rickshaw for just 7zl ($1.60) per person.
Location: 90-001 Łódź, Poland
8. Grab a drink in Off Piotrowska
To fully immerse yourself in the modern-day culture of Łódź wandering off the beaten track of Ulica Piotrkowska to Off Piotrkowska is another Łódź must-see. Off Piotrkowska is, as you might imagine, just off Piotrkowska Street. It is a modern-day development in the former factory owned by Franciszek Ramish in the late 19th century.
Think of it as Manukaktura’s trendier younger cousin developed in and around a traditional red-brick industrial factory but full of color, art, independent shops, art studios, international cuisine, food trucks, and live music venues. It makes for the perfect summer afternoon hang-out.
Location: 138/140, 90-062 Łódź, Poland
9. Hunt down the coolest Street Art in Łódź
Once being coined as ‘Gray Łódź’ owing to its industrial ancestry a government-backed effort was initiated to inject color into the city’s streets. In 2009 a revitalization initiative was born and the street art of Łódź project got underway. As a result, the once gloomy streets of Łódź are now awash with large and brightly colored permanent murals.
TIP: Consider taking an (affordable) walking tour with a knowledgeable local who can show you where to find all the coolest street art that is spread out across the city of Łódź.
10. Check out Rosa’s Passage
Worthy of an honorable mention and one of the great ‘Łódź things to see’ in terms of street art is Rosa’s Passage found at 3 Piotrowska Street. Here you will uncover a magnificent mirror installation that uses broken mirrors to transform a once disregarded and soleless dark alley into a piece of contemporary art. If you can, try to visit this installation on a sunny day to get the full effect of the natural light reflecting around this now glittering space.
Location: Piotrkowska 3, 90-004 Łódź, Poland
11. Head into nature
Finally, one of the new age and unmissable things to do in Łódź is to delve into its green spaces for a change of pace from the vivacious streets. It will not be hard to do as nearly a third of Łódź is now dominated by greenery from pocket parks to the 2,977 acres of Lagiewniki Forest.
Take a walk in the Lagiewniki forest
This forest sits in the northeast of Łódź and is so large it is one of Europe’s largest urban woodlands. You could get lost in this thick forest of gargantuan oak trees, towering Scots pines, and willowy birches. If you fancy something a little more organized then there are a number of bike and walking trails to enjoy in this lush forest also, it is even open for cross-country skiing in the winter.
If you make your way to the very center of the forest you will come across Arturowek leisure center, which is home to a lakeside beach on the Bzura river, a playground, and sports facilities. Here you can enjoy some of the fun things to do in Łódź and watch or take part in mass sporting and recreational activities, tourist events, or sit back and soak up the ambiance on the river’s edge. This forest and all it has to offer is certainly one of Łódź’s tourist attractions not to be missed.
Take a trip to the Botanical gardens
Another one of the tranquil green spaces worth frequenting is the Botanical garden in the Western Polesie district, which is open from April to October. This garden is home to over 3,500 varieties of plants and offers up wide open, colorful spaces to surround yourself with. One of the garden’s biggest attractions has to be the 50,000 strong colorful carpet of tulips that forms from late April. This is one of the many surprising picturesque things to see in Łódź and worthy of any Instagram feed.
Map of things to do and see in Łódź
Find out where all the Lodz attractions are located (indicated in red) as well as the recommended hotels (indicated in green). Check out the interactive Google Map or alternative have a look at the below map of things to see in Lodz Poland.
Where to stay in Łódź
The best area to stay in and around Piotrkowska street or around the Manufaktura site (downtown Łódź). It ensures you are within walking distance of all major Łódź attractions and have ample choice when it comes to bars and restaurants
STAY IN AN OLD SPINNING MILL
Vienna House Andel’s Łódź
A former spinning mill within Manufaktura. The rooms have kept their historic character and combined it with modern-day amenities. The hotel has a lovely pool and extensive breakfast menu.
GREAT VALUE FOR MONEY
B&B Hotel Łódź Centrum
Super location right off Piotrkowska street, this B&B is a great place to stay for travelers looking to visit Łódź on a budget and with a love for an ample breakfast selection and a quiet night’s sleep.
Travel Tips for Visiting Łódź Poland
How to pronounce Łódź
Frankly, that was my first question when researching the Lodz sightseeing options. In my mind, it sounded like the English word “Lots” (as in lots of things to do…). I could not have been further off the mark if I tried. The correct pronunciation of Łódź is in fact more along the lines of “woodge”
Is Łódź safe?
I never felt unsafe, not even walking around at night with 2 female friends. At times it felt even safer than walking around Brussels at night. The general rules of thumb for traveling do apply to be mindful of your belongings at all times.
How to get around Łódź
There are various options to get around Lodz, we opted to walk to most locations as it was a great way to see more of the city. That being said, the city is quite large so if you are on a tight schedule and want to maximize your sightseeing in Lodz there are a few options.
- RENT A BIKE: Find out everything about bike rental in Łódź
- PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Take the tram or bus. Tickets can be bought in ticket machines located at bus stops, at the train station or on the bus/tram itself. Bring coins to pay in cash.
- TAXI: The taxis in Lodz are inexpensive and reliable, but it is recommended to call in advance and to use only one of these official companies.
Łódź Travel Guide summary
There are plenty of fun things to do in Lodz, the interactive museums and vibrant street art alone make the city well worth a visit. The plethora of cool restaurants in refurbished industrial sites, great coffee scene and proud locals are but the cherry on top of the sundae when it comes to Lodz!
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